Finnish research develops new protein enrichment method
VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland has devised a way to efficiently separate proteins from agrobiomass by-products.
The study found that extracting with deep eutectic solvents (DES) is an efficient, sustainable and easy method for dissolving such proteins. DES are solids that form a liquid solution at low temperatures when mixed together in suitable ratios.
VTT‘s method was tested on separating protein from brewer’s spent grain, as well as rapeseed press cake and wheat bran. All of these food industry by-products contain significant amounts of protein. Previously, their suitability for use as animal feed has been typically diminished as they also store large amounts of fibre.
Of these three, brewer’s spent grain responded best to protein separation with DES.
This new protein enrichment method can particularly benefit breweries and animal feed producers. There are also hopes that further research could see this method finding applications in the food industry.
The commercialisation of this patented invention is currently being assessed.